Cream of Mushroom and Wild Rice Soup

Cream of Mushroom and Wild Rice Soup is hearty and perfect for those cooler weather days. It's easy to make in under an hour in a pressure cooker and the mix of assorted mushrooms, shallots and sherry with nutty wild rice in a flavorful broth makes a great combination.

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Cream of Mushroom Soup from Scratch

If you’ve only ever had cream of mushroom soup from a can, you really don’t know what you’ve been missing all these years. This recipe for cream of mushroom soup with wild rice gives you a much bigger depth of flavor because when you make it from scratch you get to add your own ingredients. That doesn’t mean that it is hard to make though, because it’s honestly a very simple recipe. I mean, it’s more challenging than heating up the contents of a can, but you love cooking, right? This recipe is made in a pressure cooker and if you’re familiar with pressure cooking at all, you know that it really just involves adding ingredients to a pot, stirring and pressing some buttons. That’s it and then you’re left with a delicious hearty one pot meal that is worlds better than anything you will buy. (If you’re new to pressure cooking, click here for all you need to know!)

A wooden cutting board with soup ingrediens - a variety of mushrooms, celery, shallots, cream, sherry, herbs and wild rice.

What’s in Cream of Mushroom Soup?

It really is what’s inside that counts, at least that’s true for almost every recipe and this one is no exception. The ingredients for this soup are pretty simple and very versatile. Aside from the mushrooms (which we’ll talk about in a minute), the ingredients are common: shallots (or onions if you don’t happen to have shallots on hand), celery, oregano, thyme, butter, cream, wild rice, dry sherry (which you can leave out if you don’t have any, but it does add really nice flavor), and some chicken (or vegetable) stock. Nothing crazy.

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A wooden cutting board with different varieties of labeled mushrooms.

The Mushrooms

When you’re making cream of mushroom soup from scratch, it’s adding a variety of mushrooms that really matters. Most store-bought soups are made with one type of mushroom, but there are so many different mushrooms to choose from in grocery stores these days that you don’t have to stick with just one variety. You also don’t have to use the mushrooms I’ve labeled above – any wild mushroom mix that is available to you will work. If all you have are button or brown mushrooms, add a mix of both of those mushrooms. Just make sure you add two or more types of fresh mushrooms. I also like to cut them in different shapes. Chopping some of the mushrooms finely helps add bulk to the soup, while slicing some so that they are still a recognizable mushroom shape adds visual interest. For the dried porcinis, any mix of dried mushrooms are perfect and you only need a small amount.

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Two hands holding a handful of raw wild rice.

What is Wild Rice Anyway?

Wild rice is the second prominent ingredient in this cream of mushroom soup. It adds a nutty, earthy flavor, but it also adds so much more! Wild rice is actually not even a rice, but the seed from a water grass. It’s the cool cousin to white and brown rice and brings a lot of benefits along with it. It has a lot more protein than white rice and a TON more fiber. It’s also lower in calories and carbs than regular white or brown rice. So, it’s more than just a pretty face! It does have one other big difference, however, which is that it takes longer to cook. That’s not a problem for us, however, because we’re using the pressure cooker which will speed things up. If you like a little chewiness in your wild rice, pressure cook this soup for 30 minutes. If you want the wild rice completely soft, let the pressure go for 45 minutes total. (If you are interested in learning more about white rice and how to cook it, click here.)

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A bowl of cream of mushroom soup on a rattan mat with napkin and spoon and a pressure cooker.

A Pretty Soup Deserves a Pretty Garnish

You don’t have to make the sautéed shiitake mushroom topping, but it does look nice and dresses this soup up. I’ll make a deal with you – for family on a weeknight, you don’t have to make the topping, but for a weekend meal or a dinner party just give it a try. It only takes a few minutes and your soup is cooking for 30 minutes anyway. Remove the stems from the shiitake mushrooms and cut them into spoon-sized pieces (leave little ones whole). Sauté them on high heat with butter and sage. Easy but they enhance the look so much and their flavor is fantastic. 

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A bowl of cream of mushroom soup on a rattan mat with napkin and spoon.

How to Make Cream of Mushroom Soup on the Stovetop

If you don’t have a pressure cooker (why not?), of course you can make this soup on the stovetop instead. Follow the recipe as written, but sauté the mushrooms for longer – about 10 to 12 minutes. Add an extra cup of stock and simmer on the stovetop for at least one hour, or until the rice is the texture that you like. Finish the soup the same way it is written in the instructions – with a beurre manié if you want it thicker and some delicious heavy cream. 

Does Cream of Mushroom Freeze?

Yes, indeed! You can store this soup in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or you can put it into an airtight container and freeze it for up to 3 months. When you re-heat the soup (from the refrigerator or freezer), make sure you thin the soup to your liking with either water or more chicken stock. 

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Cream of Mushroom and Wild Rice Soup 

  • Prep Time: 25 m
  • Cook Time: 35 m
  • Total Time: 1 h
  • Servings:
    6

Ingredients

  • 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
  • cups boiling water
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter divided
  • 3 shallots diced
  • 3 ribs celery small diced
  • 8 ounces cremini mushrooms sliced
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • 8 ounces assorted fresh wild mushrooms
  • ½ cup dry sherry
  • 4 cups chicken (or vegetable stock)
  • 1 cup wild rice rinsed
  • 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons butter room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 8 ounces shiitake mushrooms stems removed
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage

Instructions

  1. Pour the boiling water over the dried porcini mushrooms in a small bowl. Let them sit and re-hydrate for 15 minutes and then lift the mushrooms out of the liquid with a slotted spoon. Coarsely chop the mushrooms and set them aside. Strain the soaking liquid (now mushroom stocthrough a fine strainer and set this aside as well.
  2. Pre-heat a pressure cooker (Instant Pot®) using the BROWN (or SAUTE) setting. Melt one tablespoon of the butter and sauté the shallots and celery for 2 minutes. Add the cremini mushrooms and sauté for a few more minutes. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and add the oregano. Stir in the wild mushrooms and sauté for another minute or so.
  3. Add the sherry and simmer for another minute. Add the chicken stock, mushroom stock, chopped re-hydrated porcini mushrooms and sprigs of thyme. Cover and lock the lid in place.
  4. Pressure cook on HIGH for 30 to 45 minutes. (With a cooking time of 30 minutes, the wild rice will still be a little chewy. If you prefer the rice completely soft, cook for 45 minutes.)
  5. While the soup is cooking prepare the shiitake mushroom topping. Heat a 12-inch skillet over high heat. Add a tablespoon of butter along with the shiitake mushrooms. Toss the mushrooms once to coat them with butter and then let them sear for 2 to 3 minutes without stirring. Then, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Sauté for a few more minutes, until the mushrooms are nicely brown. Turn off the heat, add the remaining butter and chopped sage and toss together.
  6. Make a “beurre manié” by combining the room temperature butter and flour in a small bowl. You will use this to thicken the soup later.
  7. Release the pressure using the QUICK-RELEASE method and carefully remove the lid.
  8. Remove the sprigs of thyme and discard. Stir in the heavy cream. To thicken the soup, add the beurre manié to the cooker. (You can add a little of the hot soup to the beurre manié first to loosen it. Then add it all back to the soup.) Bring the soup back to a boil using the BROWN (or SAUTE) setting.
  9. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with the sautéed shiitake mushrooms.
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